One-piece all-moving tails?

cluttonfred

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Alberto Santos-Dumont's Demoiselle used an all-moving cruciform tail.

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Mike Whittaker used a similar approach for his MW4, which worked very well but made the PFA engineering folks nervous so the production MW5 kits and plans had two separate but still all-moving tail surfaces.

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I find the idea of making *one* tail very appealing for a simple, low and slow design. Yes, the universal joint needs to be designed carefully with plenty of reserve strength and duplicate load paths. You, you need to take into consideration mass and aerodynamic balancing. Yes, you might even need one or more anti-servo tabs like the Volksplanes. These are all design challenges, but once that's all worked out, the build becomes very appealing. It need not be cruciform, you could use an X-tail or an H-tail as well, that latter better for a low wing because of ground clearance issues.

Thoughts? Appealing idea or "no way I would fly something like that"?

Cheers,

Matthew
 
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